As parents, we all want to see our local schools succeed. The better the education they can impart to our children, the stronger the next generation will be (and the wealthier we will all become).
Sometimes, though, you don’t feel like you have much control over what happens once you drop your child off at the school gates. From that point onwards, they’re very much in the hands of teachers and support staff. And if their methods aren’t up to scratch, there isn’t much you can do about it.
Or is there?
It turns out that schools all over the country need governors on their boards to oversee their staff. Governorship works similarly to the board in a private company. Your role is to monitor the school’s executive – the senior management team – and ensure that they are acting in the best interest of their constituents.
In this post, we’re going to look at some of the telltale signs becoming a governor could be just what you need. Consider the following.
You Want To Act In Your Child’s Best Interest
Many people become school governors because they want to do something in their child’s best interest (or that of other kids in their community). Overseeing the quality of education in an educational institution is, therefore, one of the best ways to do this.
As a governor, you get a unique insight into all of the goings-on in the community. You see the quality of education first-hand and have an opportunity to set the school curriculum.
Furthermore, you’ll be part of a team of people working hard towards the school’s constant betterment. No institution is perfect, so there are always things to improve and new projects to undertake.
You Love The Details
Running a school is a complex clerical task. Governors do more than discuss grand projects or evaluate teaching quality. They delve into the details and must complete the necessary paperwork.
Therefore, the governorship is ideal for people who want to work with a Department of Education lawyer or apply for various grants and schemes. There are many administrative tasks to complete, but if that is something you love, then this role is for you.
Governors also have to pour over all of the school documents too to ensure that everything is progressing to plan. Educational institutions, for instance, must stay within budget and allocate funds according to the wishes of private benefactors. Your role, therefore, could involve a degree of oversight and picking up an audit trail.
You Want Your Voice Heard
Schools tend to conduct their affairs according to their values and preferences. You, however, may disagree with these and want to make your voice heard on particular issues. Perhaps, for instance, you disagree with the amount of homework teachers dole out over the holidays. Or maybe you think the canteen food isn’t healthy and want to change it.
I personally spent almost 5 years as a chairperson of the Boosters Club when my two sons were in middle school. We were tasked with disbursing the money we raised via fundraising to the programs that needed it the most to better the educational experience our children had. It was the most rewarding time I’ve had in working with the schools.
Whatever your issue is, becoming a governor helps you get your voice heard. You have an opportunity to make your case to the other people around the table and challenge their views. Often a single person in a meeting can hold sway over the decisions of everyone else and convince them of the proper course of action.
You Want Professional Benefits
The stereotypical school governor is somebody in their retirement, looking for a useful way to spend their time. However, you don’t have to go down this route.
Many people, for instance, take career breaks specifically to work on the school board. Being a governor can be a positive thing to put on your CV, showing that you have had positions of responsibility in the past. It could, therefore, be a stepping stone for a brighter financial future, both for yourself and your children.
You Want To Expand Your Network
School governors aren’t just ex-teachers: they’re people from all walks of life. When you work in a team with them, you have all sorts of exciting conversations you wouldn’t have otherwise. You gain new perspectives on life and make new contacts. It is a great way to expand your social circle.
The knowledge and experience of some governors is an asset all by itself. These people are typically fonts of knowledge and wisdom, able to provide you with personal advice when you need it most. You can use your governor status alongside your working life to build your people skills and career in ways you never thought possible.
Do you share any of these telltale signs that you should take up a position on the school board? Let us know.